Herb: Common Lousewort

Latin name: Pedicularis canadensis

Family: Scrophulariaceae (Figwort Family)

Medicinal use of Common Lousewort:

The roots are blood tonic, cardiac and stomachic. A tea is used in the treatment of stomach aches, ulcers, diarrhoea, anaemia and heart troubles. A poultice of the root is applied to swellings, sore muscles and tumours. The finely grated roots were secretly added to food as an alleged aphrodisiac. An infusion of the leaves has been used to procure an abortion. An infusion of the fresh or dried leaves has been used to treat a sore throat.

Description of the plant:


40 cm
(1 foot)

July to

Habitat of the herb:

Dry woods, thickets and clearings.

Edible parts of Common Lousewort:

Leaves - cooked.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow in pots of turf collected from the proximity of wild colonies or sow directly onto the sites where the plants are to remain. Division of established plants might be possible in the spring. Establish the divisions near the parent plants

Cultivation of Common Lousewort:

Dry woods, thickets and clearings.

Known hazards of Pedicularis canadensis:

The plant is said to be poisonous to sheep.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.